Hard skills are tangible industry-specific abilities often gained through training and education—think foreign languages, programming languages, bookkeeping, and data analysis. Since recruiters spend, on average, only six to eight seconds skimming your application, you need to ensure that you’re including the most impressive and relevant hard skills if you want your resume to get noticed.
Below are five of the most important hard skills your resume needs to stand out this year.
1. Digital fluency
As the digital skills gap grows, digital skills are a must-have, and though you might not think it worth mentioning, proving you can respond to emails, work online, update files, etc., is vital. What’s more, if you understand multiple operating systems and software suites, this is your chance to name-drop these on your resume. Some of the most important tools you might wish to mention are Microsoft Office, Google Workspace, Windows, Mac, and Adobe Suite. You could even include your knowledge of social media, listing the platforms you use, such as Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube.
3. Research and data analysis
Data is extremely valuable, and being able to research, find data, and analyze to spot opportunities is a very sought-after skill. Research skills also show employers that you’re proactive and have the ability to come up with new ideas. In addition, it shows your ability to adapt and grow in an ever-changing market. And the good news is you’ve probably used research skills during your time in education to write papers, as well as in your private lives.
You don’t have to be the next Ernest Hemingway, but having basic copywriting skills can be beneficial for many reasons. Being able to write coherent and engaging copy is valuable for providing information to customers, writing emails to c-workers, and communicating through platforms like social media channels. All of these tools can be important when working as part of a team or when communicating with consumers. For example, sharing information about products or services across LinkedIn can be a great way to generate sales leads.
4. Video conferencing
Since the beginning of the pandemic, many businesses have chosen to allow remote or hybrid working, and many professionals now rely heavily on video conferencing tools. You might even find that during your job search, you’re invited to attend video interviews rather than meeting in person.
In addition, there are now far more remote roles than ever before, and in a fully remote position, video conferencing is going to be crucial. As such, it’s a good idea to show recruiters that you understand how these platforms work and how to communicate effectively via video link. You could even provide the names of the platforms you’re proficient in, platforms like Zoom and Microsoft Teams.
5. Scheduling and project management
Project management skills are valuable no matter what industry you work in, and scheduling is a crucial skill. This proves you can plan, organize, and manage your workload and ensure all tasks are completed on time. Employees with effective project management skills are also better at mitigating risks, meeting requirements, and delivering a higher quality of work.
There are lots of scheduling and project management tools that have become an integral part of the workplace, and showing you know how to use these effectively can give you a competitive edge. Some of the most common software includes Trello, Basecamp, and Zoho.
Andrew Fennell is the founder and director of StandOut CV, a leading CV builder and careers advice website. He is a former recruitment consultant and contributes careers advice to publications like Business Insider, The Guardian, and The Independent.
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